The two personae alternate in their task of winding the thread towards their respective side of a threshold, their “turn” corresponding to alternating audio tracks of voices narrating personal accounts of cultural contact.
The vocal montage draws on historical ethnographic texts and interviews with recent immigrants to the mid-western United States . The monologues are intended to explore the complex terrain of establishing, recognizing, and redefining identity. They address “otherness” through historical, clinical, and intimate lenses.
The performance draws us in from the universal to the personal in its allusion to dialog. Through both resistance and cooperation, the literal “see-sawing” back and forth of the threads through the membrane provides the opportunity for communication to become a means of entering one another.
Immigrant voices: Tal Rappaport, Fabrice Payet, Lilik Sundandyo, & Lai Lai Chu
Ethnographers' texts: Branislaw Malinowski, Argonauts of the Western Pacific: An Account of Native Enterprize (1922); Zora Neale Herston, Tell My Horse, (1940s); Paul Rabinow Reflections on Fieldwork in Morocco (1977); Paul Stoller, The Power of the Between (2006).